On Tue, Sep 10, 2013 at 8:22 PM, chris peck <chris_peck...@hotmail.com>wrote:

> Given the way John has framed the task any contribution made by xyz will
> end up not being a contribution in philosophy. Take Charles Pierce who
> pretty much founded semiotics and made contributions in fields as diverse
> as psychology and chemistry; or Frege who invented predicate logic; or
> Descartes work in mathematics,  or Leibniz's invention of calculus;

As I said on Jan 6, 2012:

"I love philosophy but hate philosophers because very little philosophy
comes from professional philosophers, it comes from scientists and
mathematicians.  Every time I think I'm being too hard on philosophers
somebody mentions a person like Feyerabend and I remember why I dislike
them so much."

I have also said that Godel and Turing made some of the most important
philosophical discoveries of the 20'th century, and Charles Peirce (I don't
know who Charles Pierce is) was a mathematical logician too, and so was
Gottlob Frege. Descartes and Leibniz made huge contributions to human
knowledge but that was before 2 centuries ago. I specified the cutoff
because in their day people who did what they did were called "Natural

>  > Firstly, there hasn't ever been a method scientists have always
> employed. Secondly, there is always an argument between scientists over how
> to proceed correctly.

Exactly! If Popper had found an algorithm to do good science I would call
him the greatest human being who ever lived, but he did no such thing.

>  Students are preached to about Popper and falsificationism in one
> lecture and in the next

Philosophy majors sure, they write PHD dissertations about falsification,
but once science students get out of the 5th grade their teachers don't
preach about it much and for the same reason they don't preach about the
multiplication table much. The idea that scientists have radically altered
the way they work after 1963 because of a book Karl Popper wrote is
absolutely nuts; most working scientists probably couldn't even tell you
who the hell Popper was, they have more important things to occupy their

> Even in physics, the 'hardest' of hard sciences, there is trouble afoot
> with string theory, and a debate rages as to whether it is falsifiable

There is no debate about that whatsoever, string theory as it exists right
now is NOT falsifiable. Some think that someday it may be falsifiable and
others think it probably never will be, but nobody really knows if it just
needs more work or if it's on the wrong track entirely. Time will tell, but
right now it's misnamed, "String Theory" is not a theory at all, it's just
a hope for a theory.

> Even John, right now, is doing the very same thing. He is engaging in
> philosophy. He is expending all this effort on what he has argued is
> worthless.

Philosophy is NOT worthless, it's philosophers that are worthless because,
despite the similar sounding words,  philosophers haven't done any
philosophy in 200 years.

 John K Clark

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